Ten Sovereigns was a superb winner of in the £500,000 Darley July Cup at Newmarket – the fourth leg in the Sprint category of the QIPCO British Champions Series.
He was the subject of some strong support and was sent off a 9-2 chance as Aidan O’Brien and Ryan Moore altered tactics on last year’s Middle Park Stakes winner.
Having run respectably when fifth in the 2000 Guineas, he was disappointing in the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot when a well-beaten fourth behind Advertise.
Back on a sound surface, though, he had no trouble in turning that form around as his Ascot conqueror gave vain chase, but could only get within two and three-quarter lengths – despite the best efforts of Frankie Dettori.
Fairyland, a stablemate of the winner, came home third while Michael Bell’s Pretty Pollyanna was fourth.
O’Brien said: “He ran in the three six-furlong races in a month last year and we saw what he did. We slowed him down all winter to try to help him get a mile.
“He ran in the Guineas and nearly got a mile. When we ran him further than his distance, he felt it.
“It took him a bit of time to come out of Newmarket. He was just ready to go to Ascot, but we hadn’t really woken him up to go sprinting.
“He went to Ascot and ran a very good race and was finishing well. He looked like a horse that mentally hadn’t really clicked in yet.”
He added: “His work was unbelievable and his times were unbelievable. His last piece of work, he broke 11 seconds every furlong for four furlongs. For a horse to be doing that is very quick.
Advertise’s trainer Martyn Meade felt the race had not worked out in his runner’s favour.
He said: “He was never going to make up that ground and the winner won very well. What can you do? It’s a shame we held him so much at Ascot. It wasn’t to be today.
“It was different ground and he didn’t quicken out as one would hoped he would have done. The whole thing was a muddling race.
“If you could run it again it might be different but you can’t. It is no disgrace.
“You only get those odd chances to win the July Cup and he (Aidan O’Brien) could share it out a bit! It was no disgrace – he has won two Group Ones and has come second in a July Cup.”